Writer: Gary Johnson
Date:Monday March 8 2010
Stadium of Light
The clash of the titans! Well, hardly but this game could not get any bigger for Sunderland. 14 league games without a victory, teams below and around getting points and American owners getting nervous.
Sunderland have been playing better in defence with the solid performances from Mensah but we need some magic up front on Tuesday.
Bolton have been on a goo run of form but they are still heavily involved in a relegation fight and with a good display from Steve Bruce's men they could drop lower as Sunderland look to jump above them.
This game is vital not just for league positioning but also for all nervous Sunderland fans deciding whether or not to renew their season ticket application.
Haway lads let's have something to sing about and build on for the last 9 games of the season!
Steve Bruce on the new owner: 'What the owner has done in the last 12 months is nothing short of incredible. It's fantastic support,' Bruce said.
'We all in football want an owner and a chairman like I have got, and it's not been easy for any of us.
'But when you are in it and you are in a bad run, that's when you need the support of your owner and your chairman and I have to say, the pair of them have been fantastic.
'I have to give them something, and especially the owner. What he has done for this club in the short period of time he has been here is fantastic.
'He does everything properly. He doesn't go shouting and bawling in the newspapers, and fair play to him.'
Bruce continued: 'We must try to get to 38, 40 points - that way, then you will be safe, I am pretty convinced about that.
'This season has been unbelievable, but usually, it's enough. Last year, 35 was enough, but this year, I am looking at 38 hopefully being enough.
'If somebody had told be we wouldn't win a game in winter, I would have said they were crazy, but that's where we find ourselves.
'We had the best start in 35 years, and we haven't won a game for three months.
'That's there for everybody to see, but it's how we keep responding.
'You can just lie down and go away, or you can keep trying to do what you believe in and I am still convinced we can be okay.'
Sunderland are slowly getting back to full fitness and could hope for the same back five as they played in the 0-0 draw against Fulham. Richardson and Cattermole have been rated doubtful on other sites but they should be able to make it for this massive clash at the bottom.
Reid and Henderson were touted for a place on the bench but they should be back next weekend.
We seem to have got back to basics in defence with a clean sheet in our last game but the major problem is creativity in midfield. Steed has had a poor season but with a small break from the first team and with his magic he could unlock the Bolton defence.
Bolton will be without the suspended Cohen after his two yellow cards in their victory against West Ham.
He loves scoring against West Ham and he will be in a confident mood as he travels to Wearside tomorrow evening. He is the main threat up front with his no nonsense style and arial ability.
Sunderland will need to be in top form to keep a clean sheet but in John Mensah we trust!
Sunderland have failed to win at all in 2010
Bolton's top goalscorer is Gary Cahill with 7 in total.
Referee: Alan Wiley Assistant referees: Andy Newbold & Andy Garratt Fourth official: Howard Webb
Sunderland 1 - 0 Bolton I am going to stick my neck out and go for a win with a clean sheet. We need a win and I do not care how it happens!
Sunderland face Man City in front of the Sky cameras on Sunday 14th March.
Date:Monday March 8 2010
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